Writing Through Hard Times – May 2018

Each month, the Denver VOICE publishes a selection of writing from workshops sponsored by Lighthouse Writers Workshop. The Hard Times Writing Workshop is a collaboration between Denver Public Library and Lighthouse Writers Workshop. This workshop is open to all members of the public—especially those experiencing homelessness. Hard Times meets every Tuesday from 3-5 p.m. on the fourth floor of DPL’s Central branch. The Lighthouse sponsored workshop at The Gathering Place is specifically for that organization’s clients.

To check out more writing by the poets featured in this column, go to writedenver.org

Kevin M. Vidal


Beneath Ashes
I sifted
Searching for the answer
I cut my heart
On random pieces of broken glass
It bled all night long
But healed the next day
Then, I sifted more
Still, to find my answer
Beneath Ashes
I sifted
And soiled my hands in toxic waste
...on remnants of broken hearts, fear, loss, disease

Seeing the ruins made me cry
But the tears cleared away poisons
And moisturized the ground
Allowing me to dig a bit deeper 

Beneath Ashes
I sifted
And I sifted well, this time
Searching for the answer
I found vibrant hope, joy, and healing
Sprouting from bountiful soil
Nurtured by Love
And Sun piercing through cracks in the land
I felt so comfortable
That I rested there for a while
Dosing off before long

Now it’s here
That I’m planted
...Growing exquisitely in God’s unfiltered light
...Thriving in fertile soil
...But still hidden
Beneath ashes and ruins

Dean Glorso

Walk Sideways Along the Equator of Your Mind

Sometimes we fear the mission
Is to crash into the sun
But our conscience struggle
Is to find our laughing place

As one who fights with the invisible
It’s easy to deviate from our goals
Keep a north arrow at the end of yours no

Never lose direction

Walk sideways along the equator of your mind
With your eyes wide open
Glance often at your six
Ask your buddies to do the same

Rotate responsibilities and double down
On advancements in your life
Never forget to breathe in the best life gives
Explore the universe the best you can

This is the only trip we ever get
Live life to the fullest
Turn sorrow into life’s lessons
Move around the sun

Make this seventieth trip last
A unique journey
Without a lover now
These destinations are not the same

Look for the good on the other side
No mission is impossible
Onward soar
Dwell not

The bumpy ride
Will smooth beyond Mach speeds
340.3 meters per second
The only sound is laughter now

Celebrating 70 years of age & the 50th Anniversary of receiving Draft notice into the USMC

Benjamin Eric Nelson

My World Transforming

In the sky of clouds

Pressing onward

Cough drops


My world transforming

Losing sight of the future

Another stone turned

Incubate the deceased

Infinite tears

A loss too great to bear

Why can’t there be the love???

For all worthy friends

Sin like a thorn in my side

God I tried

Lost sight

Got back up and lied

No regret

Just difficult decisions

To be put into a box

To be remembered

A lot

To find time

Time for compassion

Close my eyes

Wish for a surprise

Like the earth giving back

A bird

An egg

Love of what I create